DIY: How Handy Are You Around The House?

About this Quiz

Being handy around the house can come in well... handy. Having the power to make minor repairs to your home is impressive! More importantly, it can save you a ton of money. But it's one thing to think you're handy and something else to actually hold that title. Prove to us that you really know your stuff in this handyman (and woman) quiz!

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1. Paint primer:

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  1. Makes paint smell good
  2. Makes paint adhere to the surface properly
Don't start a paint job without it! Paint primer is an undercoat of paint that allows paint to adhere to its surface much better. Why should you care? This increases its durability!
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2. What should NOT be part of your handyman tool kit?

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  1. A wire cutter
  2. Kitchen shears
Don't be silly! Kitchen shears aren't used for home improvement! They are used for cutting raw meat. Anybody up for some roast chicken?
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3. Use this router to:

Koldunov Alexey / Shutterstock.com
  1. Connect your iPhone to the internet
  2. Round out wooden edges
What you see has nothing to do with technology! Routers are hand-held tools that hollow, round out and create grooves in materials like wood and plastic.
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4. A frozen pipe:

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  1. Makes the water too cold to shower
  2. Might cause flooding
Don't say we didn't warn you! When the water freezes inside a pipe, it puts too much pressure on the pipes, causing them to burst. This can sometimes cause flooding.
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5. Use caulk to:

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  1. Protect from moisture
  2. Eliminate mold
Have a leaky bathtub? Buy some caulk! Caulk seals seams and joints against leaks.
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6. Oh no! The power's out! First:

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  1. Call an electrician
  2. Check the circuit breaker
Breathe. Most of the time, the circuit breaker will turn off the power in the house if a fuse has blown. Before calling the power company or taking any other course of action, check the circuit breaker.
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7. To remove the insulative coating of a wire without damaging it:

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  1. Use a pair of needle-nosed pliers
  2. Use a wire stripper
House need some rewiring? Wire strippers exist for this sole purpose. If you need to take off the coating of electrical wires without damaging the metals inside, buy yourself a pair.
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8. Oh shucks! Your drywall's cracked. Fix it with:

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  1. Glue
  2. A drywall compound
Most small cracks can be easily fixed with drywall compound. Deep cracks need a little something extra, but can also be finished off with the compound.
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9. You just finished caulking your bathtub. How long before you can take a bath?

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  1. 24 hours
  2. 3 days
Caulk dries really quickly. In fact, you can touch it an hour after applying it. That said, it needs a full day to cure.
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10. Leaky faucet? Blame:

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  1. A blizzard
  2. Broken washers
Most faucets have a lifespan of 15 to 20 years, although the frequency of use can play a big role. Leaks tend to be related to broken or malfunctioning washers.
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11. PHEW! Keep your washing machine from stinking by:

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  1. Running a wash cycle and then cleaning it
  2. Using air freshener
What's that stench? Washing machines accumulate a buildup from materials in our clothing, which can start to smell over time. The machine needs to be cleaned out, run through a simple wash cycle and allowed to dry.
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12. What kind of repair puts you most at risk?

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  1. Electrical repairs
  2. Kitchen repairs
All repair jobs are potentially risky, but the most dangerous involve electricity. There are about 1,000 deaths in the U.S. every year as a result of electrical injuries.
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13. Match "grit" to the right tool:

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  1. Sandpaper
  2. Toilet cleaner
Sandpaper is rated by its grit. Grit refers to the size of the harsh particles on the paper. The lower the grit number, the larger the particles.
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14. Pick the tools that is most like a clamp:

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  1. A hammer
  2. A vise
Hammers don't hold on to things! A vise, on the other hand, is a type of clamp, but one that is operated by a screw.
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15. Use a socket wrench to:

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  1. Tighten nuts
  2. Fix toilet leaks
If you don't have one of these, go out and get one! Socket wrenches allow you to turn nuts and bolts more easily than you would with a regular wrench.
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16. Fan come off your ceiling again? Secure it with:

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  1. Duct tape
  2. A mounting fixture
Unfortunately, duct tape doesn't fix everything. A ceiling fan needs to be fixed with a mounting device, not only because of its weight but also because of the motion it produces when turned on.
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17. Primer should only be used on previously-painted surfaces:

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  1. True
  2. False
Isn't life wonderful? Primer can be used on walls that have never been painted before, as well as walls that have already been painted.
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18. There's a crack in your driveway. To fix it, first:

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  1. Sand it down
  2. Clean out the crack
Never try to fix a dirty crack. First, remove the excess dirt. After that is done, the crack filler should be added.
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19. Time to get rid of old paint?

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  1. Flush it down the toilet
  2. Drop it off at an official facility
Careful! Most paints contain chemicals that are bad for the environment and can be dangerous to children and animals. That's why it's best to drop it off at an approved facility.
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20. The grounding wire in an electrical outlet is:

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  1. Green
  2. Pink
Do you know the saying when it comes to ground wires? It goes, "green is the ground, the world around..."
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21. Why make a pilot hole?

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  1. To center your screws perfectly
  2. To stop the screw from splitting the wood
Using screws in wood is not always the easiest thing. There is a chance that it may split the wood. Pilot holes ensure that this will not happen.
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22. They're magical! A floating floor:

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  1. Doesn't need to be nailed down
  2. Can float when the room floods
Floating floors are placed on top of old floors but don't need to be nailed down.
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23. Why did your roof fall in?

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  1. Squirrels
  2. There's something wrong with the ceiling joists
Ceiling joists are a necessary part of every home. They are attached to the tops of load-bearing walls and help support the roof.
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24. Clean a paintbrush:

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  1. With lighter fluid
  2. With mild soap and water
Using a mild soap with some water is the best way to clean a paintbrush. Want a bit of extra help? Cheap paintbrush combs can help speed up the process.
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25. How often should you change your furnace filter?

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  1. Every three months
  2. Every thirty years
A home's furnace filters should be replaced every three months. Their job is to protect a blower fan from all the hair and dust pulled in by the return duct.
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26. Where's your crawl space?

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  1. Under the house
  2. In the master bedroom
Crawl spaces are found in houses that do not have full basements. They are often open dirt areas below houses.
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27. Time for new flooring? Which tool do you need to make it smooth and level?

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  1. A finishing trowel
  2. A power washer
Finishing trowels are incredibly important in construction. They're used for smoothing out plaster, mortar, and concrete.
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28. Remind us, "HVAC" means:

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  1. Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning
  2. Handy ventilator and air chopper
HVACs, or heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems, are used to control the temperatures in different rooms, as well as the humidity levels.
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29. Why won't your toilet stop running?

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  1. A worn flapper
  2. There is a plant growing in the bowl
You're not doomed to pay a high water bill, just change your flapper. Worn flappers are usually the reason why toilets leak and never fill up the way they should.
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30. To change a shower head, use:

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  1. A sledgehammer
  2. A wrench
It's not rocket science. You don't need many tools, if any, to remove or replace shower heads. If you do need one, it'll most likely be a wrench.
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31. Fix a small hole in a plaster wall with:

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  1. Spackle
  2. Newspaper
Spackle is a unique kind of household putty that can fill small holes in drywall, plaster walls, or sometimes wood. After it is applied, it should be allowed to dry then sanded down and painted.
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32. Finishes on wood can help protect it from:

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  1. Sulfuric acid
  2. Changes in temperature
Not many things are acid-proof, least of all wood finishes. But they do protect against humidity and temperature changes.
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33. It's hot and humid out there! Your wood deck is:

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  1. Swelling
  2. Rusting
When wood that is normally dry gets wet, it can swell by 8%. In humid conditions, it is also susceptible to expansion.
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34. An advantage that PVC pipes have over metal ones is:

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  1. They are less flammable
  2. They do not corrode
In addition to not corroding, PVC pipes are abrasion-resistant, lightweight, and can be shaped easily.
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35. Why insulate?

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  1. It looks good
  2. To keep in heat and increase sound control
The main goal of insulation is to keep heat inside the home when the temperatures outside drops.
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36. Which of the following saws is best for cutting curved lines?

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  1. A handsaw
  2. A jigsaw
A jigsaw is your best bet. Handsaws are great for straight cuts and right angles.
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37. Shower head clogged again?

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  1. Soak it in vinegar
  2. Knock it until the dirt shakes loose
Vinegar is a great cleaning agent. In addition to cleaning shower heads, vinegar can remove limescale and other germs.
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38. When do you need to buy duplex nails?

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  1. When building temporary structures
  2. To build a duplex
Duplex nails have two heads. They're used in temporary construction situations. One head is used to secure the nail, while the other is used for easy removal.
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39. Walls need a makeover? How should you start painting?

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  1. Start with the edges
  2. With a paint gun
The edges of any wall will always be the most difficult to paint. Start by painting them with a precision tool. Then, grab a roller and finish the rest of the wall!
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40. What does "PVC" stand for?

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  1. Postal verification card
  2. Polyvinyl chloride
PVC stands for polyvinyl chloride. It's one of the world's most widely used synthetic plastic polymers.
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41. To find an everyday, versatile hammer at the hardware store, ask for:

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  1. A claw hammer
  2. A club hammer
An everyday hammer is often called a claw hammer. Why? It has a curved claw, located behind the head. The head hammers nails in, while the claws pull them out.
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42. Why is your kitchen drain clogged again?!

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  1. A buildup of grease
  2. You're using too much electricity
Electricity and water don't mix. There's no reason that using too much, or any for that matter, should affect the flow in a drain.
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43. Your heavy-duty hammer is probably made of:

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  1. Steel and fiberglass
  2. Bronze and silver
You may think that all hammers are made equally and with the same materials. That simply is not the case. Those used for more rigorous jobs are made with more durable materials.
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44. We recommend NOT using sandpaper on:

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  1. Drywall
  2. Skin
Sandpaper can be used on a variety of materials, but human skin should not be one of them.
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45. Tools that use pressurized air are called:

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  1. A dynamic apparatus
  2. A pneumatic tool
Pneumatic tools are also known as air-powered tools. They are driven by compressed air that comes from an air compressor or carbon dioxide stored in small cylinders.
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46. Use a power auger to:

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  1. Dig holes
  2. Clean dirt
If you have a job that requires you to dig holes, a power auger will speed things up immensely. It can help with anything from putting up fences to building decks.
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47. To tighten a screw, turn it:

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  1. Left
  2. Right
There's a fun little saying where screws are concerned, "righty-tighty, lefty-loosey." It basically means that you should turn a screw right to tighten it and left to loosen it.
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48. Which kind of tape is NOT adhesive:

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  1. Masking tape
  2. Measuring tape
Use a measuring tape to determine the length and width of various materials. There is no adhesion here.
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49. When should you use painter's tape?

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  1. Especially when you don't have precision brushes
  2. Only when you want to paint your floors
While painter's tape is indeed a handy tool, it is not needed whenever painting. With the right precision brushes, the same look can be achieved without the tape, albeit with a bit more patience.
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50. Veneers:

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  1. Are only used on stove-tops
  2. Cover cheaper looking materials
On a budget? Veneers are thin strips of wood that are often adhered to cheaper surfaces to make them look more upscale.
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